Dark Shadows: The End of Eve

Former witch/current vampire Angelique has disappeared from Nicholas Blair’s house and is in hiding to avoid being staked by him for going behind his back to get at Barnabas Collins just one too many times. The evening after abandoning her old coffin, she emerges from her new hiding place to form an alliance with another woman whom Nicholas has tried to keep under his control, with about the same amount of success: Adam’s basement-built and unwilling bride, Eve.

Angelique tries to get Eve on her side by offering her what Nicholas had refused to do–send her back in time to see for herself if Jeff Clark is really her old love, Peter Bradford. Eve decoys Nicholas out of the house by telling him that she’s seen Angelique heading toward the hospital, where both Barnabas and Joe Haskell are recovering. After he’s gone, Angelique comes in and casts her spell.

We’re back again in 1795, that most eventful year in Collinsport’s history.

Only a matter of days have passed since we last visited this time period, for Eve arrives at the Collinsport courthouse to learn that Peter Bradford is about to be hanged for that murder he didn’t commit. She also hears gossip from the jailer about Victoria Winters being hanged, then turning into someone else–which the local people take as absolute proof that she was a witch.

Angelique’s spell only allows Eve to go back into the past for 6 hours, so she starts to form a cunning plan to help Peter to escape, change the course of history, and stay on in the 1700s in spite of the spell, almost as soon as she arrives.

I also note that everyone, including Peter, recognizes her as Danielle Roget, the French lady who left town about six months earlier so that she missed all the excitement up at Collinwood. They’ve dropped the idea that Eve has a new face in her latest incarnation.

For help, Eve/Danielle turns to Josiah Collins and his servant Ben Stokes, who are the only members of the family left apart from the little boy who will carry on the family name. Josiah had finally come around too late to the idea of Vicky’s innocence and is sympathetic to Peter’s plight, but the governor has turned down his appeal to have Peter’s life saved. Therefore, Mr. Collins is ready to agree to the lady’s request and have horses ready outside the jail for Peter’s escape.

Eve in her gratitude steals that book of Collins family history that Vicky brought with her from the 1960s and left behind in the 1790s when she was arrested. Josiah had told Ben to take it away and burn it once he had copied the stories about what happened to his family out in his own handwriting, but instead of simply tossing the book on drawing-room fire, Ben gives it to Eve.

Eve carries the book with her back to the courthouse, where she enacts her plan to flirt with the jailer and distract him long enough to drug his drink and, once he’s passed out, free Peter. The horses are waiting as promised and there’s no reason why everything doesn’t go according to her plans… except that Peter refuses to escape. He places more hope in seeing Vicky again in another life than in running away and spending the rest of this one with Eve.

Eve and the Collins Family book He gives Eve a note, which she takes as the proof she’s come into the past to obtain. Then her time’s up. She tucks the note into the book and takes both with her as she fades out.

Once back in 1968, she sends the book to Vicky as a wedding present, for Vicky and Jeff are to be married the next day. The card she encloses is signed “Peter.”

Vicky is perturbed by this gift, since she knows where–and when–the book was last seen, but it’s actually Jeff who crumbles.

On the morning of the wedding, Eve meets him in the garden and gives him the letter he wrote as Peter just before his death. Same handwriting, and it mentions his love for Vicky.

This proof that he really was Peter Bradford in 1795 sends Jeff into a tizzy of an identity crisis. Vicky doesn’t care–she’s always believed he was Peter and loved him for that as much as anything else. But instead of going ahead and marrying her that afternoon, Jeff postpones the wedding ceremony so he can go over to the cemetery and dig up the grave where Peter is supposed to be buried. He wants to see if what, if anything, is in there. Roger Collins goes out to find him at Vicky’s request.

Roger and Jeff at the cemetery

By the time Roger gets there, Jeff has already got the coffin out of the ground, which is pretty quick work but Jeff has plenty of grave-robbing experience.

Both men are still in their formal-wear for the wedding. Roger probably owes his own tux, but I’m pretty sure Jeff’s is rented and he’s getting it all muddied up.

When they open the coffin, they find it empty.

Eve, meanwhile, has gone to Jeff’s room in Collinsport to wait for him. She’s sure that he’ll break with Vicky. And while she’s right about that, what she didn’t plan on was Adam. To keep him and Nicholas from suspecting what she’s been up to, she’s occasionally lied to the big guy and pretended to have feelings for him when she truly can’t stand to be near him. Unfortunately for her, Adam has followed her into town and catches her in Jeff’s room. In an outburst of jealous rage, he throttles her.

Shortly afterwards, Jeff goes home to pack his suitcase and leave town. Vicky has come after him, determined not to let him go or to go with him. She’s not going to let a little thing like reincarnation keep her from the man she loves. While they’re arguing over it, Jeff opens the closet door. Eve’s body tumbles out.

About Kathryn L Ramage

Kathryn L. Ramage has a B.A. and M.A. in English lit and has been writing for as long as she can remember. She lives in Maryland with three calico cats. As well as being the author of numerous short stories, novellas, and essays, she is the author of “Maiden in Light,” “The Wizard’s Son,” and “Sonnedragon,” novels set on an alternate Earth whose history has diverged from ours somewhere during the medieval period. All three are part of an intended series of fantasy novels that mostly take place in a dukedom called the Northlands, a part of the Norman Empire that roughly covers the north-eastern U.S.

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